An anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury has been career ending for some athletes. Fortunately for some players, following treatment, it is possible to return back to sports. Here are some of the phases of rehabilitation your therapist might require you to follow before clearing you to return to play following surgery.
Returning to your sport following ACL surgery is possible with the right rehabilitative care. To help ease you into physical activity again, your therapist might recommend a period of jogging. Jogging serves many functions, including helping to improve functionality. It also gives your therapist an opportunity to assess how ready you are to return to physical activity.
During the jogging phase, you will need to pace yourself according to the recommendations of your therapist. Even though you most likely have experience with jogging, it is important that you rely on your therapist for the exact technique and posture you need to take while jogging. Depending on the severity of your injury and your progress, the jogging phase can last a few months.
Once you have completed the jogging phase, your therapist will start to incorporate exercises that focus on strength. Focusing on your lower body is important due to the nature of your injury. A variety of exercises can be used, including lunges. Lunges focuses on strengthen the knee joint and helps to stabilize it.
It is very important that you do not overwork your knee during this time period. Too much stress on the knee can lead to a re-injury. Stick to the exercise plan outlined by the therapist. As with the jogging phase, you could be required to focus on the strength phase for a few months before you allowed to move forward.
The practice phase is a chance for you to return to sports without being required to play at full strength. During the practice phase, you can practice your sport to help build up your physical and mental strength. Suffering a physical injury can not only take a toll on your physical strength, but it can impact your mental and emotional state. By practicing your sport, you can work on gaining confidence back.
It is important that you understand that it can take a long period of time to fully recover from your injury. Even if you are anxious to return to your sport, rushing the process can only hurt your body in the long run. Talk to your therapist about your concerns and work with him or her to create the best treatment plan possible. Contact a company like Eagle Center Physical Therapy for more information.
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